Saturday, September 27

Blogging and schtuff

Click to enlarge

I was sitting here at the computator last night after having read all my email, watched all the interesting videos I could find on YouTube (was looking for pirated previews of American Idol), and did not feel like watching television. So I decided to go to and hit the [Next Blog>>] thingy at the top-middle-ish part of the page and see what others blog about. What I discovered is that I tended to stay longer and be more interested in blogs that had pictures, and the more the better. What I noticed more though is that most of the blogs had very few comments. Maybe one or two 'regulars' which I assumed were friends who knew them in real life. Oddly enough that made me feel better, because I thought the reason people weren't commenting on my blogs was because I just didn't have anything interesting or important to say. I no longer think that's true, I think it's just the way of the blogworld and nothing personal. Hence today's writing and pictures. Speaking of pictures, the one above is Simba in a crate we use to transport cats to the shelter every so often. Apparently it's been long enough that there aren't any weird vibes in it. Rocky also lays in there a lot.

This is where those 3 Poplar trees were...Click to enlarge And this is where they are now...Click to enlarge So hopefully we won't freeze to death this winter. Seriously, we wouldn't even if we had no wood, because we have portable heaters for each room of the house that could be combined to make a formidable "force of heat". LOL.

While I'm thinking about it, which I obviously am... I thought you might be interested to know that Microsoft has released "Internet Explorer 8". We have it on both of our 'puters and it works fine until you try to close gaming sites like Pogo and like sites that use a lot of Java. So I would actually suggest that you wait if you frequent gaming sites. But that could and probably is just me (well, my wife really. I don't play many on-line games). *grin*

In other news... (I'm liking those dots. lol)... our van (aka: gas hog aka: Dragon Wagon) is on the fritz. Might be something super simple or something like the fuel pump going out (chugs going up hills). *heavy sigh*

Tuesday, September 23

Chain sharpening and file saving

I sharpened the chainsaw chain again yesterday, and a bit better than I did it the day before. Actually, while I was doing it yesterday it crossed my mind that I really didn't sharpen the chain the last time because I didn't apply enough pressure to the file. Yesterday I did though, and it did seem to cut better. Today I am not cutting any wood though because I apparently strained my back by stupidly trying to lift one end of the tree onto a log to raise it so that when I cut, the log would just fall off. I don't know why I do shit like that, especially knowing I've got a bad back, or at least an easily tweaked one. Then to top it (my back) off, I did a couple of sets of 10 stomach crunches. Unfortunately it wasn't just my stomach that got exercised. Sigh! I do want to say that sharpening the chainsaw chain wasn't nearly as hard as I thought it would be, nor was it as time consuming as I originally expected. So, not only do I feel good in that I learned a new ability, but we're also saving money by not paying someone to do it for us and also by not driving the gas-beast into town for that reason.


I was just in the process of saving the above writing to my journal CD and computer. Actually, for some weird reason (most reasons seem to be) I can't save it from Microsoft FrontPage directly to my CD. I have to save it to a folder on my computer, then send that folder to the CD, then delete it from the computer so anyone that would be inclined to hack my computer looking for something "juicy" wouldn't find anything. In case you're wondering, when I try and save an HTML FP page directly to the CD it says "the folder is marked as read only". I have tried changing that, but it doesn't allow me and says, "access denied", which I don't understand as not only is this my computer, I'm logged on as the administrator/owner of it. Anyway... I feel a lot less depressed now that I've written what started out as being "for my eyes only".


It *just* occurred to me that if I didn't have a folder to save the files to but rather just saved them directly to the unfolderized CD that the aforementioned "problems" might not exist. *sigh*

Thursday, September 18

Firewood, stick bug, bentos, shoe rack, garden

(click any picture to enlarge it)

This is a picture of our back yard after I cut down 3 Poplar trees. For two reasons: 1) They were old and starting to make us worry about falling on the house (the 2 closest), 2) Firewood for the upcoming winter. This is what I've been doing for the last 3 days. I've gotten two of them cut into logs and my DD & I moved most of those logs into the wood shed to dry yesterday. Still have one more tree to cut up, but I need to sharpen the chainsaw chain before I can.

These are what are called "Bentos". Rain got the idea from our good friend "Hippie_Mamabear". She (Rain) remembered just last week that she had a bunch of tupperwear and thought this would be a great to use them, so my son and I wouldn't starve to death waiting for her to cook us something. *lol* The problem with me is that I don't have much of an appetite most of the time, so I don't go looking for food.

This is our "new" shoe rack. It used to be used for video games, but they fell over and then off too easily, besides us not being able to convince our son to keep his games there. Our dog, Sugar, has this 'need' to 'babysit' our shoes whenever we're not wearing them. She doesn't chew them or anything, just has them laying with her wherever she's sleeping. It's cute, but makes it hard to find the shoes because she only takes one at a time.

stickbug.jpgThis one is already full size. Anyway, this "stick bug" was on our door the other day so I took a picture of it.

And last, and probably least, this is/was our garden this year. As you can see, didn't really spend much time working on it. Mostly because we're not really big veggie eaters anyway and also because we're hoping to move.

You are now all caught-up with what life here on the homestead has been like for a while now. Up until I found these pictures I couldn't think of *anything* to write.

Fluorescent lights

(click to enlarge)

This is a picture of our kitchen lights, which are fluorescent ones. *grin* And the reason I took this particular photograph, you ask? I have the answer. Because I wanted to show you that both of the current light bulbs are working, and also what I installed a new "ballast" in. The ballast is what makes the power to the fixture work. We didn't think one of the two ballasts were working because BOTH of the light bulbs were flickering and only partially lit. After the installation, we flipped the switch to on, but nothing had changed. Went to the shed to get what I hoped we had, a replacement bulb, put it in, and VOILA! Both bulbs came on. Could've saved ourselves $32 had we just tried replacing the bulb first, but we didn't even think about doing that since BOTH bulbs were flickering. We had a ballast go out before, like 6 years ago and we thought the other MUST be bad... we were wrong, but since the new one is already installed we can't take it back for a refund. Hope this saves YOU some money as well. *embarrassed sigh*

Celtic fair pictures

I took a couple of pictures today for my blog, and when I was looking at them for downloading to the computer, I noticed that I had some pictures I took when we were at The Celtic Fair in Buffalo, MO on the 7th of Sept. I had *totally* forgot that I took them. I was so excited about showing the video I took that I spaced the photos. *grin* So I figured I would post them before I get to the current events. As always, click on a picture to enlarge it.

This is from the edge of the parking lot when we first arrived.

This is just a picture of the bonfire pit (aka: grill) where they'll place the burning 'swords' after they call each clan's name.

They are calling the Clan names and lighting the swords or whatever it is they're using. Never got close enough to see what they *really* were. Anybody know?

Same as above, only they're now marching towards the fire pit.

They've arrived at the pit, layed the fire sticks in, and are doing what I think was a prayer for a clan member that passed over. (?)

This is the same as the last picture, only a bit closer.

Sunday, September 14

Digital signal was weak

... or non existent whenever it was over-cast and/or raining. We would only get channel 33 (Kstv-Springfield), but all others were snow/static. I wrote them all an email last night asking if they would be strengthening their signal before or by Feb. 13 so we could watch tv during thunderstorms or cloudy days. After it was all said and done, it turns out that once we moved the RCA Digital Converter Box to the top of the entertainment system (was in the middle compartment next to the tv with wood all the way around it), we got ALL those channels. I sent them a message saying, "My bad!" for assuming it was their fault. Just thought I would mention it in case someone else was having the same problem. Plus if you're wondering why they can't just change frequencies before the deadline, to make the signals even stronger, it's because they have to go through the FCC before they can. Just another FYI.

Friday, September 12

Bowling in September 08

In case you were wondering what we were up to yesterday afternoon, watch this video.

Tuesday, September 9

Words. Update. Family. Friends. Excitement.

I am at an almost total loss of words. Not that I don't know some, but I can't think of *any* that anyone hasn't heard, or that they want to hear again. In other words, there aren't any words that are "new" and "informative" or for that matter all that "interesting". And yes, it would appear that words with quotation marks around them mean more than others that don't. LOL.

I guess it would be easier if there were people who sent me emails that asked how I am, how my family is, and stuff like that. But they don't. So I really don't know IF people REALLY care how we are. Kind of like restaurants that have comment cards about the service or whatever. If people don't fill them out and tell them what's wrong, there's no way that they can take corrective actions because they don't know what the problems are. Ya know?

What's new with me? Hmm... I went to the doctor yesterday. It was a follow-up on the increase of Fluoxetine and the new drug I started (Provigil). She said that she could tell by just looking at me that there was more of a sparkle in my eyes that wasn't there a couple of weeks ago. That I just seem more upbeat. I was like, "Okay, if you say so. All I know is that I do tend to feel better but didn't know there was an obvious change". Then my wife said, "I've noticed a change too" and my daughter said the same thing. I guess the bottom line is that the increase in one plus the new drug I started are working and everyone, not just me, are happier because of them. YAY! Better living through chemicals, eh? LOL.

Ran into (not literally) a friend and her kids yesterday, and even talked with them a little. 'twas really nice seeing them, as I had been wondering about them for the last few days.

The next exciting thing to happen will be Thursday when we get together with other homeschoolers at the bowling alley. Can hardly wait. Hey, we live in rural/small town America, not a lot of excitement around here. LOL.

Monday, September 8

Celtic Festival and Friends visit

On Saturday friends from a couple of hours away decided they would like to attend the Celtic Festival in Buffalo, MO, but they stopped by here first. It was totally awesome to see them and their kids. Wow, the kids have definitely grown, and for the better. *smile* While we were waiting to leave on the 20 minute drive into town it of course started sprinkling rain. Almost always does when T and Rain are in the same area and this time was no different. So we got there, grabbed a hotdogs, cokes, chips and sat down to eat. After that we moved over to a place with a roof and then waited, waited, and waited some more for the bagpipe players to march. After they did, we waited some more until a group of girls in a drumming/marching band played. They were awesome, but I didn't get any video because it had been raining and I forgot my camera in the van. Eventually the rain did stop and we started wondering around a little. While my wife was talking to some of the vendors about one of her Celtic relatives, I took the following short video...

After that we came home and talked a while. Their kids decided the swimming pool water was warm enough and they jumped in, much to our surprise. They have a pool at home too, but their kids thought it was too cold. Apparently ours didn't look as cold. *brr*

While we were away, the people we gave our chickens to came and got the chicken coop. Our yard now looks REALLY bare.

This is where the coop was.

And this is what was under it...

And while I was out there with the camera I decided to take a picture of the Weeping Willow Tree, just for the hell of it. *smile*

Friday, September 5

(video) Walking 'round the house

So ya wanted to see what else we do 'round here, eh? Well, here it is. LOL

Waiting, for the world to change?

Me too. Or at least that's why I'm assuming this song just would NOT leave my head this morning/early afternoon. So I decided to go to YouTube and find the video, which I did. I guess I'm kind of feeling that way because we want to move out of the country and into *a* city, so we've gotten rid of the chickens, don't have a garden to speak of, etc. So I'm wondering, "So what do we do while we're waiting?" And that's where I'm at. Someone commented on my "back on the farm" video, saying "Do more vids on what You are doing at the farm! ". So I've been trying to think of what else to video, but all I can think of is walking from one place (side or front door) to another place while looking through the camera lens. I just don't think a video of me walking to the clothes line and hanging up clothes (or taking them down I guess), or to the pool to skim it or add cleaning chemicals, turn it on, etc, would be all that exciting. You see? In *MY* mind, my farm life is not all that exciting, so can't fathom why anyone would want a video of it. We can't move until we win the lottery or someone hands us a HUGE sum of money. We have to live though, and live here until that happens. What to do? WHAT to do? Everyday stuff I guess, like laundry, cleaning, television, computer, drive to town every so often to get this, that, and the other thing (like food and?). But other than that, rarely does anyone just come to visit, just call, send us a private email, send us a hand-written letter or card (postcard or otherwise). Basically *if* I think TOO MUCH I feel I'm living the saying, "Out of sight, out of mind". And this is AFTER an increase in medication. LOL. Well, tomorrow should be a good day. Some friends are planning to visit, and we haven't seen them for...well...I can't remember exactly when we saw them last. REALLY looking forward to seeing them, and attending the annual "Celtic Festival" in Buffalo Missouri with them tomorrow!

Tuesday, September 2

Bye bye chickens

I did just what I said I would... I posted to FreeCycle yesterday afternoon and offered all 25-30 chickens, and their coop. Lots of people interested. If all goes well, the chickens and the coop will be gone tonight. No more hosing chicken shit off of the porch. YAY! No more buying expensive chopped corn (granted, it has only been 1 50lb bag/mo for a while now). No more getting up at 7 a.m. to let them out of their coop. No more having to worry about getting home before dark if we go out visiting friends. No more suddenly realizing "Oh crap, has anyone locked the chickens up? It's really dark!" I don't know anyone who has experienced "the letting go" of stuff, but this feels (or will) really nice. It's like I'm getting another piece of 'freedom' back. COOL! Just got a call from the people who're coming for them this evening, so it's really going to happen. They will have to come back for the coop though, as they can't get a trailer to haul it in until this weekend. That's okay though, and of course said that plan was cool.

They'll also be taking the broody pen (below), which we will fill-up with chickens.


Monday, September 1

Done and could be doing, but...

I've read email (3 or 4 maybe) and blogs (2). I've updated my blogger 'header', yes again. I over-cooked and ate a hamburger. Got the dishwasher running. Read some news headlines. Am drinking coffee. Have taken my medicine. So now what?

I could practice playing pool. I started doing that once last night, by myself, and after sinking the cue ball several times, missing several shots I realized it just wasn't that much fun playing alone. A while later my dear wife played a game with me, and that was MUCH more fun. *smile*

I could start painting the outside of the house, at least on the porch overhang side. Though it's pretty warm and humid out there, and because of my health (or lack thereof) I would NOT get much done before overheating and wearing-out.

I could cut-up the already downed tree that's in front of the woodshed, but... (see above).

I guess I'll surf on over to YouTube and "see" what's going on there.

So what are YOU up to, or could you be doing but aren't?

Oil exports

Okay, I'm obviously not understanding why we need to drill for oil in new places if we already export 1.04 million barrels a day to other countries. Seems to me that if we just reduced that amount and used what WE need here, then we wouldn't NEED to increase domestic drilling. And of course that makes it seem to me that we DEFINITELY shouldn't have invaded Iraq for their oil, and shouldn't be threatening Iran or anyone else for that matter!